I have started this post about 4 times.....each time ends with me holding down the delete button and going crazy. I haven't known what to write down. I haven't wanted to write anything down either. The last month has been a whirlwind of emotions. Emotions that I did not even imagine to expect. After my last Chemotherapy infusion I was teary for about a week. I was on a high from being finished. I cried about finally being done, and I cried thinking about all that this last year has brought. It has been good....and incredibly hard...on me and my little family. Then after that week was over I felt an enormous let down. Like jumping off a bridge let down. For the last year, every week has been dictated by appointments, more appointments and feeling like garbage. I would plan one or two weeks ahead of time.....check those things off of my list and then look forward (just a little bit) to my next planned treatment. Then...all of a sudden, my calender was clear and I didn't need to see any Oncologist, Rad. Oncologist, Surgeon, Psychiatrist, Oncology Nurse, Social Worker or Gastroenterologist for like a whole month! Yipee-Ky-Yeah you might be saying! And that is exactly what I said for the first little while. But to my dismay, almost a year of high stress took its toll on my body and mind. My coping mechanism of choice has been humor (and denial mixed with a little sewing and chocolate)...and they just don't seem appropriate anymore. The thoughts "I can't believe what I have been through" and " I have to live the rest of my life like this?" have been consuming and sorrowful.
I was thinking that I would take a few weeks to heal, get my brain back and have my body in decent shape to do what I needed to do to be a wife and mother. Well now I am 6 weeks out and still feel like I have quite the waiting game in front of me. I have half of a brain, am still really tired and do not have a lot of stamina. See picture below: Taken by Johnson child #4, then followed by 100 more pictures of weird things around the house and yard. (And I am totally not kidding about that number!) What happens at the Johnson House (while I am sleeping)...stays at the Johnson House.....cause I pretty much am incredibly oblivious!
I have a lot of neuropathy in my hands and feet and on the outsides of my upper legs(thunder thighs). In fact, the neuropathy that I experienced during treatment was a cake walk. I am continually guarded, just in case someone (one of my kids) might touch my legs. My arms and hands feel sore and are constantly tingly will fall dead asleep without warning. I have been put on more medication, hoping that it will lessen my pain. This weekend we did some oh-so-needed yard work that just about put me in the grave. I was more sore and miserable. My left over pain meds were my only saving grace.
In the last two weeks, I again have become sick and tired of Drs. and the hospital. I have seen an OB-GYN for some help with some hormone replacement therapy, because all of the radiation and chemotherapy have put me into menopause. I have morphed into a total beast and have become the hotflash/nightsweat queen. Everyone that resides at our address is praying that I will level out, and am happy to report that the last few days I have seen some improvement. I was obedient and had a mammogram, and CT scan. We are waiting to hear results from my Dr.'s, although we are feeling positive that everything will be O.K. We also passed the bittersweet year mark of my diagnosis, without a lot of fanfare. Jeff worked late and I spent the night at the Pinewood Derby. Next week I will have the dreaded Colonoscopy followed by more Dr. appointments. This cancer circus is continuing to keep us on our toes even though I am technically finished with treatment.
But as for now....I am resting, and resting.....and doing laundry, meals, dishes, eating chocolate, not getting on the scale, trying to keep up with my children, (and trying to not let them drive me crazy) and feeling good about not being nauseous. One thing that I am totally missing is hanging out with this lady!
|And YES in this picture I feel just about as bad as I look! ;)|
During my Chemotherapy treatments (all 12 of them) my angel Mother sacrificed everything that was on her plate and traveled to Boise to help juggle our schedule. She was a maid, cook, nanny, chauffeur, sewing/project partner, party planner, and shoulder to cry on. I don't know if I would have made it without her, and am so blessed to call her mine. (How about you come back when I am feeling good!!???)